After months of working the route Stefano Ghisolfi has made the first repeat of “Bibliographie” 9c / 5.15d. This makes him the first person to repeat a 9c and only the third person to have ever climbed a route this hard.
Stefano started working on the route in late May, managing to do all of the moves individually in a fairly short amount of time. However, with these world class climbs they are more often about enduring a very long line of hard moves than just a couple of hard crux sections.
For the past week Stefano has been in Céüse and out on the route again after coming back and forth for a while. After posting “Last day, last chance to climb the monster” he has managed to send the historic route. Congratulations Stefano!
“Bibliographie” was the second ever 9c / 5.15b to be climbed. Alex Megos was the first person to do it back in November of 2020. Megos worked the route for 60 days over multiple years, spending time on other routes and competing in between – never sure if it was even possible.
Bibliographie Downgrade To 9b+
Stefano has since talked about his personal grading of the route on an instagram post, saying part: –
“I climbed it in a total of 25 climbing days during this 3 months, and I tried to compared it to Change and Perfecto Mundo (both 9b’s – Editor), changing my mind every other day. Change took me around the same time and Perfecto Mundo a bit more, but I feel all the 3 routes could fit all in the same grade range.“
“I know I can climb a 9c, but for a route to be that grade it needs to be much harder than the existing 9b+s, and Bibliographie for me isn’t. This doesn’t mean I want to belittle the performance of anyone, neither Alex’s or mine, it is still an incredible achievement“
Essentially Stefano would give this a personal grade of 9b+ or 5.15c. It’s still one of the hardest routes in the world, but probably not at that top level of 9c / 5.15d. It’s controversial but also something that happens very commonly in climbing, plus Alex also welcomed others to try the route and give their opinion.
Some climbers find certain styles easier or harder, and Stefano used the same measurement for grades that Alex Megos did – using the time/days on the project as a measuring stick. Alex did spent 60 days on it, but over a fairly wide time period of three years. During this time he picked up an injury, competed indoors, and traveled widely on different styles of rock.
Without being at that high a level we can’t really made any judgement on the grade or individual climbers. It’s up to more repeats to gain a consensus. Stefano is the only other person to have climbed “Bibliographie“. However, Jakob Schubert has also tried the route and managed to do all of the moves – though hasn’t attempted to put them together.
Seb Bouin was belaying Stefano on the send and is also projecting it, so we could see another send fairly soon given the concentration of professional beta improvements. He is also working on his DNA project which could be another 9b+. Sean Bailey and Shawn Raboutou are also in the area so it really could be a crazy season.
Because Céüse is an already popular crag with good access, camping, and a large good season, this route is probably going to be a candidate for a lot of other climbers to jump on and give it a go. Whether it’s gets a downgrade or is fully confirmed we can’t hazard a guess at.
It’s a huge 35 meter route on a continuous overhang that features non-stop crimps and small pockets. It’s not just pulling hard the entire way and there are a few big dynamic moves due to the sparseness of the holds. It was originally bolted by Ethan Pringle back in 2009 but no-one ever got close to a send.
The name is a reference to the famous “Biographie” route just a few meters to the left. This was the first 9a+ in the world, originally sent by Chris Sharma. The first 9c was “Silence”, famously climbed by Adam Ondra back in 2017.
Stefano Ghisolfi of Italy has multiple other hard projects that could be 9b+ or harder too. He’s also one of just a handful of people to have climbed 9b+ / 5.15c with “Change” in 2020 and “Perfecto Mundo” in 2018. After Adam Ondra he’s the person with the most 9b+ routes climbed.
Photos are both by Sara Grip who also took photos and video of the whole send and process. Expect a full send video soon.